WASHINGTON April 19, 2012 Arne Duncan Todd Thibodeaux CompTIA
"CompTIA agrees with the need for improvement and change for the Perkins Act and we are supportive of the Administration’s overall direction in the Blueprint for Perkins Reauthorization: Alignment, Collaboration, Accountability and Innovation. Our goal is to work with the Administration, Congress and other key stakeholders to increase the quality of career and technical education (CTE).
"In particular, we agree that there is a strong need for improved standards to maintain the consistency and quality of CTE at both the secondary and post-secondary levels. The Administration’s efforts to increase cooperation and alignment between CTE programs and industry needs are in line with CompTIA’s priority of enhancing job readiness and placement within the IT sector.
"CompTIA also supports the Obama Administration’s goal of attainment of industry certifications for CTE graduates and agrees with the need for improving the quality and standardization of performance data collection for CTE Programs. Nevertheless, we would caution that accountability may only be achieved when the process of data collection and assessment is sound. Currently we are leading the way to improve the ability for IT certifying bodies and state boards of education to share performance data on certification exams, and we are working with the Department of Education to increase awareness of these efforts and expand the model to other industries.
"CompTIA welcomes increased funding through the proposed ‘Innovation Fund’ administered by the Department of Education. These funds should be designated to help augment current Perkins funding to states for CTE programs. As CompTIA works to advance CTE one concern is that the proposed changes in funding distribution from a formulaic model to a competitive grants model could have an undesired effect of narrowing the scope of CTE.
"We welcome the opportunity to work with Congress and the Administration to improve the quality and reach of CTE programs through positive changes to the Perkins Act."